Denied Parental Love
It would be so nice if all parents understood that the children are gifts from heaven, a fruit of love between two people, not a punching bag, an object that is used to throw your rage at. The very same parents should be happy for being blessed with a small child who will grow to be grateful for all the good things they give it. Unfortunately, the situation at some homes is not like that. I often hear stories of parents beating their children, punishing them for every minor mistake, and ever more often, punish children out of frustration due to poor material situation or dissatisfaction. And it is not the children’s fault.
There are many cases like that, and I will tell you one that I learned about from my grandmother, which concerns Milica, her friend from youth. At the age of less than six, Milica got her first slap in the face from her father whom she loved most in the world. Until then, he had never been violent towards her. It was on the day when he got fired from work, he came home in bad mood, and when she asked him when they would go to park, he responded with a slap in the face, after which she went mute. She spent the rest of her childhood in silence, tears and beatings. She had no friends, nobody to share her pain.
When she was 16, she tried to stop the suffering and report her father to the police. To make things worse, nobody understood what she was trying to explain with hands, tears and sad eyes; they did not want to understand and admit the real cause of bruises on her body. They were explained by the girl being active and hurting herself in play. After such lack of understanding on the part of the police officers, the suffering and sadness on her face became even more apparent. The only comfort she had was that he had tried to save herself, but unfortunately, her attempt was futile.
Some years after that, Milica met a wonderful boy through my granny, who loved her in spite of her disability that she “earned” in early childhood. Soon they got married. However, sadly, the trauma she had suffered and lived through turned her into a spitting image of her own father. She was nervous all the time, in bad mood, aggressive and lacking interest in any kind of socialization. She even resented her kind and reasonable husband. After two years of marriage, Milica and Nikola got a son. Luka was good and happy baby, but Milica had no motherly feelings towards him, she frequently left him alone in the house, she did not change him regularly, not to mention feeding him. The boy grew in very bad surroundings, with a bad mother and a helpless father. When he started school the suffering increased. His mother mistreated him frequently, hit him without reason. She took out her childhood frustration on the helpless child punishing him the same way her father used to punish her. Because of her own suffering, she never managed to learn how to be a good parent to her child. Unfortunately, her son suffered for the sad fate of his mother.
My grandmother was Luka’s teacher at the time. She finally decided to stop his suffering and went to see Milica one day. She stamped into their small but nicely decorated apartment, and started talking. “Milica, it is not good what you are doing to Luka! Even with such a cold mother, he grew into a wonderful boy who has a great future. I want you to stop punishing him for things that are not his fault. You cannot continue behaving like that, pushing away anyone who tries to get close to you. I will not let you!”
Milica’s eyes filled with tears. My grandmother did not want to spend another moment with her, although she had been crying inside too, blaming herself for not having reacted sooner. On leaving the apartment, she heard the words: “I did not mean to do it! The fact that I grew into such a person is so painful! That I caused so much pain to my son! I hope he will be able to forgive me one day! I will never hurt him again!”
My darling grandmother turned back to her in awe, and looked at her face. After so many years Milica spoke again. She realized her mistakes. Several months have passed until her husband and son forgave her. That day changed everything. Their future was better and brighter. Any change was welcome, as long as it is positive. Sometimes, many teas need to be spilled in order for things to get to their proper places. Let’s not allow that our children and children of our friends feel such pain. No child should feel worthless, raised to believe that it is only a bother, that the bad life of its parents is somehow its fault. On the contrary, tell your child that it is your greatest treasure, and don’t you ever hurt your child!
Story: Vesna Đukić
Photo: Studio TNT
Meet the author:
Vesna Đukić, born 14.01.1991 in Bihać. She completed the elementary and high school in Srebrenica. Since she was very young she liked literature and writing personal diaries. She works in “Children musical theater ” Srebrenica as team coordinator. In her free time she works as translator for English. Vesna is involved in a number of activities, events taking place in our country and abroad. She spent the month of August in Austria where she got an opportunity to gain additional experience in the field of movie, editing and movie making. In July she worked in the Center for children with special needs in Pula and in the Center “Los Rosales” from Mostar. Currently she is working on a small campaign of collecting help for children from Roma population from Mostar. She is a training on the issues of: prejudices, stereotypes and discrimination, understanding of conflicts, identity and ethno-national identity, facing the past, peace building, gender roles in the society, team work and joint decision making.